Nokia N8 smartphone

Nokia N8 review: Nokia's N8 smartphone is an imaging and multimedia powerhouse, but its software is clunky and lacks polish compared to the iPhone, Google Android and even Windows Phone 7 smartphones

  • Review
  • Specs
  • Images
  • User Reviews (1)
  • Buy Now 6
Nokia N8
  • Nokia N8
  • Nokia N8
  • Nokia N8
  • Expert Rating

    2.75 / 5
  • User Rating

    5.00 / 5 (of 1 Review)

Pros

  • 12-megapixel camera with Carl Zeiss lens and Xenon flash
  • HDMI-port and USB On-The-Go
  • Superb luminium design

Cons

  • Sluggish performance
  • Clunky UI and ultimately poor user experience
  • Comparatively poor Web browsing experience

Bottom Line

The Nokia N8 fails to deliver a satisfying smartphone experience. An excellent camera and great multimedia features aren't enough to excuse the N8's clunky software and frustrating user interface.

Would you buy this?

  • Buy now (Selling at 6 stores)

See all prices

The Symbian^3 OS offers a number of live widgets across the N8's three home screens, but widgets can't be resized. A handy contacts widget allows you to add your favourite contacts to the home screen, while the social-networking widget displays recent status updates from Facebook and Twitter. It should let you to update your Facebook and Twitter status from the home screen, but instead tapping on the widget simply opens the full client to update your status. Text is too small and can't be resized, the app is noticeably slower to load than clients on other smartphones, and the size restrictions imposed on widgets means that tapping the up and down arrow buttons to read status updates is awkward. Some of the N8's widgets have an Australian flavour, such as the News.com.au, SMH and Coastal Watch widgets, but they offer nothing we haven't seen on other smartphones.

Nokia N8

The Symbian^3 OS on the Nokia N8 has three home screens that can be customised with live widgets.

Extra widgets can be downloaded from Nokia's Ovi Store. Though the Ovi Store has steadily improved since its release, it has far less apps than its competitors (about 13,000); there is still no official Symbian app for Twitter, eBay, PayPal or Dropbox (to name just a few). There is also a distinct lack of apps that have a 'wow' factor, such as 3D games, and the store itself isn't as easy to use as its competitors. Strangely, the Ovi Store isn't preloaded on the Nokia N8 — tapping the shortcut directs you to download and install the app.

It's not all bad news: the preloaded Ovi Maps application includes a lifetime, free subscription to full turn-by-turn navigation, which is a nice feature considering you have to pay up to $100 for the same service on the iPhone and other smartphones. The upgraded music player is slicker than ever and displays albums in a similar "cover flow" style to the iPhone. The N8 handles multimedia better than a lot of smartphones we've tested, with sound quality a particular highlight, along with the range of file formats supported. But the entire user experience of the Nokia N8 ultimately leaves a sour taste in your mouth. The N8 is packed to brim with features and has the best camera we've ever seen on a smartphone, but this isn't enough to compete with slick and easy-to-use competitors. And that is truly a shame.

The Nokia N8 is available through all Australian carriers (Telstra, Optus and VHA) but is also sold through online store MobiCity.

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molbal

1

I disagree with this review, the UI is not clunk, I feel (eg) a Galaxy S struggling after using my N8, the Symbian OS is the most optimized ever. For example, a Galaxy S needs to open 5 megapixel large images with an 1Ghz CPU - and sometimes struggling - an N8 opens 12Megapixel images with a 680Mhz cpu - and not struggling.

'Performance is sluggish, especially when you have a few apps open simultaneously.' - Nope, I can run up to 30 apps at the same time - it was struggling. But with the usual 2-3 apps open at the same time, it scrolls smoother than a Galaxy S, and my dad's iPhone 3GS (I Admit, an iPhone 4 struggles less). Don't forget, that the N8 do run programs when multitasking, not like Android, and iOS which does not actually run, just keep them in memory.

The OS is a crap, I know, but why did not you use Opera? Everyone uses Opera on an N8.

Please, check out for some things, before you write an article like this.

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W Head

5.0

1

Pros
HDMI, USB OTG, FM Transmitter, Wii Remote Connection, 12 MP Camera
Cons
Processor speed, Screen Size
• • •

I have an N8 and the HDMI, USB OTG, FM Transmitter, Wii Remote Connection, 12 MP Camera make it the best smartphone around, even today.

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